AUTHOR ARCHIVES

Tammy Flanagan

Tammy Flanagan is the senior benefits director for the National Institute of Transition Planning Inc., which conducts federal retirement planning workshops and seminars. She has spent 25 years helping federal employees take charge of their retirement by understanding their benefits.

For more retirement planning help, tune in to "For Your Benefit," presented by the National Institute of Transition Planning Inc. live on Federal News Radio on Mondays at 10 a.m. ET on WFED AM 1500 in the Washington-metro area. Archived shows are available on NITPInc.com.

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Processing Problems

February 10, 2012 Last week, a group of senators held a hearing on the ongoing issue of federal retirement processing delays. Here’s what I learned in watching the hearing: The current average wait for a retirement application to be processed is more than five months. Some cases linger for more than a year ...

Life Insurance Options

February 3, 2012 Last week, we looked at basic coverage options under the Federal Employees Group Life Insurance program. This week, as promised, we’ll go over optional coverage. FEGLI offers three types of additional coverage: Option A (standard optional insurance) has a $10,000 value. Option B (additional optional insurance) equals one to five ...

Life Insurance Basics

January 27, 2012 One of the key decisions you must make when you retire is what to do about your life insurance coverage. Federal employees are automatically enrolled in the basic version of the Federal Employee’s Group Life Insurance plan when they are first hired and can add optional insurance to supplement it. ...

Retirement Planning Social Security Quiz: The Answers

January 20, 2012 Retirement Planning: Social Security Quiz The Answers 1. c 2. c. At the full retirement age, a spouse is eligible for half their spouse’s full Social Security retirement benefit amount or their own benefit -- whichever is higher. If Sandy began collecting her own benefit at 62, however, this would ...

Social Security Quiz

January 20, 2012 It's been a while since I've tested your knowledge in this column, so I thought it might be fun to put together a quiz on Social Security benefits and how they fit into planning for your future. After you take the quiz, click here for the answers. 1. What was ...

Reductions and Withholdings

January 13, 2012 I recently received an email requesting that I write a column describing the deductions from benefit checks that are common for retirees. The emailer wrote: Some of my colleagues look at the gross figure of their retirement benefit, but don't realize that by the time you take out your deductions, ...

The Index: 2012 Edition

January 6, 2012 Since 2006, I've been privileged to have my name appear under the Retirement Planning column every Friday. If you would have asked me then if I would still be writing this column in 2012, I would have said, "No way." I would have thought it would either have been too ...

A Few Good Things

December 23, 2011 It is easy to focus on the bad news coming through the pipeline these days, such as proposed cuts to federal employee benefits and pension processing delays at the Office of Personnel Management. Still, 2011 wasn't all bad, was it? And there are some things to look forward to in ...

Great Expectations

December 16, 2011 More than 100,000 employees each year retire from civilian federal careers that have lasted from as little as five years to more than 40. As usual, the end of the leave year -- Dec. 31 -- will be a popular date for many of this year's new group of retirees. ...

Medicare Choices

December 9, 2011 Little is more confusing for employees and retirees than the decisions that must be made when you become eligible for Medicare. Let's look at two scenarios to see how Medicare and Federal Employees Health Benefits Program can fit into one picture. Situation 1: Active federal employees age 65 and older ...